2014 WSB Care-a-Thon Your support moves us closer to a future free of childhood cancers and blood disorders.

Politics: How The GOP Can Build An Effective Relationship With The Black Community

Published by: on Thursday July 26th, 2012

This election year is very vital and crucial to the survival of America. It is about jobs, the economy and the financial structure of the American household. In this op-ed, I highlight ways the GOP can reach out to African-American families. The thought that they will continue their staunch support for Barack Obama is misguided and false. The GOP can build a relationship with the black community if they put forth a sincere effort. Please read my op-ed below to find out how this dialogue can be constructive.

 
The historic election of Barack Obama was indeed an electrifying moment for the United States. The election of the first African-American President was a monumental step in racial equality and harmony. It was truly a sign that America is the land of opportunity and that regardless of race, people can succeed.
 Obama has not been the only African-American Democrat to capture the attention of blacks. Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Charlie Rangel and others have become a beacon in the Democratic Party. The GOP has also seen an increase of influence in the black community with the election of US Congressman Allen West, Congressman Tim Scott from SC, education and pro-life advocate Star Parker, just to name a few. I want to discuss how the GOP can continue to move forward and establish a good relationship with the black community.  1.) The GOP must attempt to outreach to the black community.
 

  1. If the GOP will put forth the effort, African-Americans will listen. Blacks are not one-side minded people or a monogamous population. They are very diverse in thinking and living. Many blacks are frustrated with the GOP because they feel ignored. One of the ways the GOP can regroup and revitalize is to have “kitchen-table” talks with blacks, hear their ideas, and provide economic solutions that will go beyond rhetoric
  2. The GOP must realize that many blacks are socially conservative-minded. Family values are a huge concern and the central part of the African-American family. The culture of life is indeed sacred and valuable to the black community. With regards to the detrimental outcome of slavery and segregation policies regarding the lives of blacks, the African-American community deeply knows how precious life is. There must be a focus on the importance of highlighting the importance of how vital the father figure is in a child’s life and how the two-parent structure benefits blacks socially and economically.  Therefore, the culture of life reigns as an integral factor in many African-American lives.
  3. The GOP must have a sound economic message. Blacks for many years have been victims of economic disparity. They know how it is to work hard for minimum wages to provide food and shelter for their families. While The Obama Administration continues to expand government by massive spending and promote entitlement programs, the GOP must counteract with a message that is helpful—entitlement programs do not create jobs or accumulate wealth. Capitalism is a sure way of making sure the poor and middle class and be elevated into a higher income bracket. Many African-Americans believe that they can achieve their goals and pursue their dreams without the government interfering. For so long, governments have made promises that have turned up being empty. The GOP must proclaim its message of fiscal conservatism to the black community, so that their children and grandchildren do not have to spend their lives paying off the government’s debt, but can pursue the American dream joyfully.
  4. The GOP should not attempt to do outreach in an election year cycle only. African-Americans, and minorities in general, find it highly offensive when politicians try to reach out to them months before an election. Showing up right before an election appears phony and simply “staged.” The GOP should not be afraid to go in the ghettos and the inner cities to outreach. The time for simply allowing the Democratic Party to take advantage of the black vote is over. The GOP needs to take a visit to black America and let its presence be known. They need to make their presence known on black radio, black television, magazines, etc. They should not be dominated by fear or anxiety, but be confident, optimistic and sincere. Like I previously said, African-Americans are not one-side minded people. They like to hear the issue being portrayed from different sources. Just because many voted for Obama does not mean they will not hold him accountable come November. African-Americans are looking for results instead of rhetoric. The GOP should provide solutions and answers, not condemnation or meaningless criticism, because it will not prevail.

 
Last, but certainly not least, the African-American community needs to give the GOP a chance. It is a good thing to see an African-American President AND opposing views from African-Americans in the conservative movement. This is good for the black community. It is healthy and constructive to have a dialogue with varying differences and beliefs that can help brighten the approach to public policy. It gives the black community two perspectives to look at. It gives them another voice to adhere to. It enables them to see that economic solutions can be given through another source. The African-American community should not be resistant to the GOP, but should convey with the GOP their concerns and ideas. To the GOP: get involved with the African-American community. I cannot reiterate this enough.  Don’t expect things to change overnight, but put forth the effort to build a relationship. To African-Americans: if and when the GOP comes into your neighborhood, hear them out.